Grilled Pastrami, Swiss, and Sweet Onion Marmalade on Rye

July 25, 2009 | By andrea | Filed in: Beef, Recipes, Sandwich.


If you’re hankering for a tasty new sandwich then you must try this recipe. Don’t let the sweet onion marmalade scare you away because it’s an easy-to-make, sweet and savory condiment that is really delicious. Also, the marmalade can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to use (it keeps for 2 weeks). For best results, rewarm the refrigerated marmalade a bit before making the sandwiches.  

I used black sourdough rye bread from Trader Joe’s as the foundation for the sandwiches. I suggest using a generous amount of the whole-grain mustard to balance out the sweetness of the onion marmalade. I used sliced Swiss cheese instead of grated (although grated will melt faster). Husband gave this recipe two thumbs up. In fact, he inhaled two whole sandwiches in one sitting. I’d say that’s a seal of approval!

Grilled Pastrami, Swiss, and Sweet Onion Marmalade on Rye
-recipe from Sunset Magazine, July 2009

Make the marmalade ahead so you can whip these babies out in just a few minutes. Leftover marmalade is terrific on pork chops and roast beef.

Onion Marmalade
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup red-wine vinegar
1/2 cup dry but fruity red wine, such as Zinfandel or Grenache

4 slices extra-sour rye or caraway rye bread
2 tablespoons softened unsalted butter
4 thin slices pastrami, uncured if available
4 ounces coarsely shredded Swiss cheese
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard

Make marmalade: Melt butter with oil in a large heavy frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onions, garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper, stirring well to combine. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions have softened and browned, about 20 minutes. Add vinegar and wine. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has been absorbed and onions are soft and sticky, about 10 minutes. Let marmalade cool slightly.

Make sandwiches: Evenly spread one side of each bread slice with 1/2 tbsp. butter. Spread unbuttered side of 2 slices with 1 1/2 tbsp. marmalade each, then top with pastrami and cheese. Spread mustard on unbuttered side of remaining 2 bread slices and place each, buttered side up, on pastrami- and cheese-topped slices.

Heat a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Add sandwiches and cook, turning once, until golden brown on both sides and cheese is melted, about 5 minutes total.

Make ahead: Marmalade keeps up to 2 weeks, covered and chilled.

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3 comments on “Grilled Pastrami, Swiss, and Sweet Onion Marmalade on Rye

  1. Ron Ares says:

    I can personally vouch for this one. A neighbor thoughtfully donated one of these to my refrigerator and it was later eaten in just a few bites while standing over the sink. Delish.

  2. That sounds and LOOKS so good!! I’ve not had a sweet onion marmalade to be quite honest. I am sooo intriqued!! I’ll be trying this! Thanks!

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